The Other Critics

Miles Clement Finds Little La Lune; Jonathan Gold Gets inked.

M.C. Michael Voltaggio
M.C. Michael Voltaggio Photo: Tatiana Arbogast

Miles Clement loves Little Lupe Little La Lune, a stripped down, strip mall version of Little Cambodia’s La Lune, which burned in a fire last April. No mere rehash, the critic finds that this Long Beach little one “represents a new wave, a contemporary Cambodian cafe designed for a new generation” while ditching the banquet food of its progenitor. The satay is “superb,” cha kroeng makes an interesting detour from classic Khmer lok lak, and the best part of waking up is congee “teeming with swollen grains of rice, slivers of fried garlic and a scattering of cilantro.” [LAT]

Speaking cryptically about pop-ups, Jonathan Gold writes, “I’d like to pop up in this space as the writer I was here in the 1980s, writing about performance art, baroque opera and movies starring guys named Corey, but then neither of us would figure out where to have dinner a week from Saturday.” Even the march of time shouldn’t stop our favorite critic from an occasional Eazy-E memory, but today’s he’s talking about a different pint-sized mega-talent, Nancy Silverton, and the whole hog dinners going down under Chad Colby at Mozza. “When the meat board shows up at Whole Hog, conversation fades into lustful stares,” he writes, warning us to “be prepared to stab your neighbor with a fork if she snags the last piece of crunchy, fatty skin” on the 10-hour roasted pork shoulder. [LAW]

J. Gold, no devotee of vestigial modernist falderal (or The Bazaar), is still quick to grab a seat at Michael Voltaggio’s ink. Calling Voltaggio a “phenomenon” who is “as driven by technique as by ingredients, and overall by the imperative of originality,” Gold sidesteps the question of whether any of this enhances or muddies said ingredients. We look forward to finding out what he thinks in the full review. [LAW]

Answering a question from a lady who wants to take her bookclub to a restaurant, Mr. Gold replies that he’s a fan of pairing novels with noshing, though he fears, “For the rest of her life, my daughter will probably wonder just how Little Women relates to a Swiss chard gratin.” Recommendations follow for Le Saint Amour and Meals by Genet. [LAW]

Miles Clement Finds Little La Lune; Jonathan Gold Gets inked.